ANGOLA: How one language absorbs another.
Until 500 years ago, the country we call Angola today, was a place which had no written culture. It was an oral culture. People did not write things down. But when the Portuguese colonialists arrived to conquer Angola in the 17th century, and add Angola to its Brazilian Empire, the Portuguese language began to seep into the local language as did the Portuguese tradition of writing seep into the Angolan oral culture. Very little evidence of this process has survived, other than the 1,160 manuscript items, written on a variety of supports, which date from the late 17th century to the early 20th century. By studying them we cross the disciplines of history, anthropology and linguistics, and can find evidence of this profound transformation of an essentially oral southern African culture, through the assimilation of the Portuguese language and its repercussion on both Portugal and Brazil.